Yakutia Airlines’ Q300s approved for flying to regional airports
Yakutia Airlines has received approval for its Bombardier Q300 aircraft to be operated out of 15 regional airports with unpaved runways, which are managed by state-owned enterprise Airports of the North. This was made possible after Federal Air Transport Agency issued an appropriate approval, more than a year after the Canadian-made turboprop aircraft had entered service with Yakutia.
The 15 airports may be operated without restrictions in the winter season, when their bearing ratio complies with the requirements. However, during the rest of the year, especially during the summer with heavy showers that cause soil soaking, there may be limitations. In every case, captains on each flight will have to make the decision to land based upon the information given to them on the runway conditions.
Yakutia Airlines, which started operating the Q300 in 2014, could not fly to a number of airports with unpaved runways for a long time because they lacked approvals. The authorities argued that Russian and Western soil-density measuring standards differ. The airline joined forces with Bombardier to clear up the discrepancies.
In the meantime, such airports comprise the major share of Yakutia’s aerodrome network, and lack of approval hindered the regional carrier from realizing its full potential, according to its general director, Olga Fyodorova. The Q300, unlike other types operated by Yakutia Airlines, is capable of flying long intraregional routes without fuel stops. The approvals will save the carrier 35% of its fuel costs, Fyodorova said.
As of February 2016, two Q300s were registered with Yakutia Airlines.
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